Thursday, October 29, 2009

Fluff Fighter Round 2

I am a fluff fanatic. I love the rich back story that GW provides and sometimes it gets me into trouble on the tabletop because I like to put the story before the stats. As an Iggy player I feel that I am fortunate enough to have one of the richest stories in the universe. You can't beat the heroism and bravery of plain 'ol humans going up against an HR Giger nightmare and coming out heroes. However, there are some aspects in the story that just gnaw at me when I read through the codex. Imagine this conversation if you will....

Soldier 1: 500 count ration containers
Soldier 2: Check
Soldier 1: 1000 count Lasgun clip containers
Soldier 2: Check
Soldier 1: 50 tonnes hay
Soldier 2: Che.... wait, what?
Soldier 1: Yeah, for the horses
Soldier 2: Horses?
Soldier 1: Mounted Cavalry, 250th company
Soldier 2: We are taking horses... into space?

Now I know that they call them "Ogryns" but you get the idea. In my opinion this stuff just doesn't seem to fit. Horses? Ogres?.... Hobbits? I mean, come on, we have tanks that can spew the 4th state of matter on command and you expect me to ride to battle on a horse? Not to mention the sheer logistics of dragging a bunch of horses through space.

Also, what's up with the Ogres and battle Hobbits? Isnt one of the main tenants of the Imperium:
"Burn the heretic. Kill the mutant. Purge the unclean."
It should read more like this:
"Burn the heretic. Kill the mutant. Purge the unclean.... Unless they are really, really helpful then we should totally recruit them."

I don't know about you but I would file a planet full of giant, brutish ab humans under M for Mutant.

Now I can understand why GW may put these characters in to justify game-play balance but why not just make specialized human troops? Are there no ninjas in the 41st millennium? No stealthy, well trained snipers that we can rely on? Have we no other alternative to a fast reacting close combat unit other than a guy on a horse with a bomb on a stick? They don't seem to have any issues with specialization in other armies. Just look at the Eldar for crying out loud, they have an Exarch for everything from tank busting to dog walking.

I would be fine with it if they wanted to make the Imperial Guard a "Lighter" army with funsy units such as sniper hobbits, ogre commandos and the My Pretty Pony Patrol but if you go that route I believe you should either embrace it or leave it. To go halvsies on a concept like that just comes off feeling flat and cobbled together (Squats, where did you go?).

Those are my two cents, what do you think?


  1. Heh, classic. I couldn't agree more - when I was first told the IG had sniper hobbits, I groaned. Then again, I groaned when I first heard the term "Space Marine" too, then pirked up when they got called Astartes. Sadly, the ratlings don't have an alternative name to distract you from the fact that the Imperium took over Middle Earth and put all the Shire-folk to work...

    I'm personally ok with both units rules-wise, but I won't be using the models. The Ogryns will be guardsmen in exo-armour and the ratlings will be hooded/cloaked troopers that look sufficiently different to reduce confusion...

  2. Good to know that I am not alone out there. As for your conversions you will have to be sure to post lots of pics. I am trying to come up with "counts as" models myself but haven't come up with anything that has tickled my fancy yet.

  3. Remember, the universe is a biiiiiig place. really big. big enough to have a vast array of different units like this. I wouldn't think they'd be taking horses all over the galaxy per-say, but theres definately some worlds that could use mounted calvalry effectively.

    just another view. (2 cents if you will)

  4. Oh I can see where you are coming from Zealot. If you were making a PDF (Planetary Defense Force) then a horse option could be logical. The Gaunts Ghosts series even touches on it a little with psychically linked bird mounts.